Honouring seven-year-old Deyaan: Western Sydney’s brave organ donor this Saffron Day

NSW communities are being encouraged to wear orange on Sunday 22 October 2023 and register to become an organ and tissue donor.

22 October is Saffron Day, a day to honour the life of Western Sydney boy Deyaan Udani who became an organ donor in 2016 at age 7.

When Deyan tragically passed away on a family holiday to India, his parents Rupesh and Mili made the decision to donate his organs, making him the youngest organ donor in India.

Shortly before the holiday, Deyaan and his older sister, Naisha, had learned about organ and tissue donation at school, and had informed their parents that they wanted to be organ donors to help others.

Deyaan’s parents’ decision to donate his organs meant four lives were saved. Rupesh Udani, Deyaans father, said Saffron Day was a fitting way to remember his brave son.

“Deyaan was a lively, fun-loving boy who always wanted to help others,” Mr Udani said.

In order to honour Deyaan’s life, and to encourage others to register their intent to be a donor, we came up with the idea of Saffron Day.

“Saffron has a lot of significance for us. Orange was not only Deyaan’s favourite colour, but orange also represents sacrifice, courage and strength.”

Health Minister Ryan Park said Saffron Day is the perfect time to consider becoming an organ and tissue donor.

“Organ donation saves lives and increasing awareness and consent is critical to lifting our donation rate,” Mr Park said.

“We encourage NSW residents to jump online and pledge to give the gift of life to those in need.

“You can make a real difference to the many Australians waiting for transplants by registering to become an organ and tissue donor, and importantly, telling your family of your decision.

“Only about two per cent of people who die in hospital will be eligible to donate their organs. However, many more people have the potential to become tissue donors.”

Organ and tissue donation saves and transforms lives. One organ donor can save the lives of as many as seven people and many more can be helped through tissue and eye donation.

A total of 54,769 NSW residents registered as organ and tissue donors in 2022, bringing the total number registered to 2,670,875 – about 42 per cent of the NSW population, above the national average of 36 per cent.

319 NSW residents received an organ transplant last year, and 122 NSW residents became organ donors.

With around 1,800 people on Australian transplant waiting lists at any one time, and a further 14,000 people on dialysis who may need a kidney transplant, you can make a real difference in the lives of others by registering as a donor on the Australian Organ Donor Register and then telling your family.

It doesn’t matter your medical history, your lifestyle or how old you are – you can still register as an organ and tissue donor.

You can register to be a donor through the Donatelife website donatelife.gov.au or through myGOV or the Express Plus Medicare app.

If you are already registered talk to your friends and family. Tell them you want to be a donor. Encourage them to register too.